The sanitation programme at Bir Hospital, the oldest and arguably the busiest government hospital, will now be focused on the face-lift and digitisation of the hospital and National Trauma Centre.
The 15-day sanitation programme was launched on May 6, as a joint collaboration among between Health Ministry, Dhurmus-Suntali Foundation, Bir Hospital, and other stakeholders.
The programme was originally scheduled to be completed on May 21, but then taking into account the dilapidated state of the facility the sanitation campaigners decided to go for a major renovation.
According to State Minister for Health and Population Padma Kumari Aryal, the hospital will be handed over only after the renovation is completed.
The hospital will have its own ‘Hello! Bir Hospital’ service through which the patients can lodge their grievances and suggestions. “The hospital will have digital services along with ‘Hello Bir Hospital’. It will emerge as an example among all the government health facilities,” said State Minister Aryal, briefing the media on the progress.
Assuring that there would be regular monitoring of the hospital to check the performance of its staff, the minister warned of stringent action against wrongdoers.The sanitation programme has already produced results. Not only has the hospital got it face lifted, but the toilets also look cleaner and walls brighter now.
According to Sitaram Kattel aka Dhurmus, Rs4.86 million has been spent on the renovation purpose, with the Dhurmus-Suntali Foundation donating Rs 1.46 million for the cause. The press conference turned tense when some journalists asked Kattel why they were collecting funds for the hospital renovation while the government allocates budget for its maintenance.
Responding to the pointed question, Kattel said: “We never requested for donations. Those who made donations did so voluntarily and we are utilising it for the sanitation programme.” He also said he is ready to face investigation regarding the embezzlement of the donated amount.
Chairman of the National Academy of Medical Sciences (NAMS) Ganesh Bahadur Gurung defended the foundation saying, “A person can donate on his will to any foundation over which the hospital cannot say anything. We must praise and thank the donors.”
Minister Aryal declared that all the expenses made by the state and hospital, along with the collections and expenditure made by the foundation, would be made public once the renovation is completed.
The renovation programme will continue on the National Trauma Centre once the works on Bir Hospital are over.